The Spectacle Blog

Dems Defecting on Iran Deal

By on 3.16.15 | 12:47PM

They may not be happy that Sen. Tom Cotton went to the trouble of drafting a letter to the President reminding him that he needs to run any Iranian nuclear deal by Congress before emptying the silos and shipping off the yellowcake (which, it seems, was never actually sent to Iran), but that doesn't make Congressional Democrats any less likely to bristle at the thought of coming to the bargaining table with the mullahs.

Democrats - including the Administration - assumed, at least according to POLITICO and other media outlets, that Cotton's letter would make it easier to pick off Democrats who had previously expressed conscern at the Administration's willingness to engage in talks with Iran. After a week of signature-gathering and snarky responses, however, the White House hasn't managed to pick up any support it didn't already have. And skeptical Democrats are still being maddeningly skeptical.

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Ted Cruz Scares a Small Child, Probably

By on 3.16.15 | 12:24PM

This is a better than usual Monday morning, mostly because it's 70 degrees in Chicago and I've been watching The Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt nonstop on Netflix. But also because a number of liberal outlets have been posting this "damning" video of Ted Cruz "making a small child cry" at an event over the weekend. 

Apparently, while addressing a small collection of New Hampshire voters as though that weren't a precursor to exploring a Presidential run (after all, why else would you go to Nw Hampshire?), Ted Cruz told the audience that the world "is on fire," and it made one little girl, Julie Trant, a bit concerned. 

Now, while it may be understandable to be terrified of Ted Cruz, for various reasons and at various times, it seems fairly overblown to suggest that this three-year-old is going to be permanently scarred by her encounter with Senator Cruz. After all, that sequinned green top hat in the video frame is far more likely to give any reasonable person nightmares.

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Vladimir Putin Reappears, Is Apparently Not Dead

By on 3.16.15 | 11:02AM

Over the weekend, everyone from NBCNews to ESPN had a theory on what was happening with Russian President Vladimir Putin, who had, until today, been out of the public eye for slightly over a week. According to rumor, there was a coup, he was dead or seriously injured, possibly witnessing the birth of his love child in Switzerland, or the victim of botched plastic surgery.

Sadly enough, especially regarding that botched plastic surgery thing (uggggh, a facelift-gone-wrong would have been amaaaaazing for traffic), Vladimir Putin emerged today for a very public meeting with Italian Prime Minister Matteo Renzi looking as fresh faced as a daisy, and if undead, perhaps the most normal-looking undead person in history.

Russian President Vladimir Putin resurfaced Monday, smiling and looking his normal self after a 10-day absence from public view that fueled a wave of rumors about his health.

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Boston’s Winter of Discontent

By on 3.16.15 | 10:11AM

Boston now officially has had its snowiest winter on record.

Yesterday, 2.9 inches of snow fell bringing the total to 108.6 inches topping the previous record of 107.6 inches which was set during the winter of 1995-96.

Whereas that snow accumulated over an entire winter, this accumulated in the space of less than two months. On January 23rd, only 5.5 inches of snow had fallen. I remember turning to my roommate Christopher Kain and saying, "Boy, we haven't had much snow this winter."

Me and my big mouth. Four major storms would follow. In one 18 day period, 71.8 inches of snow fell. The bulk of the snow came in February when 64.9 inches fell.

On a personal note, I have not experienced a winter like this since moving out of Canada 15 years ago.

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Ed Klein: Valerie Jarrett Behind Leak of Hillary E-Mails

By on 3.15.15 | 8:37PM

In an article which appeared in The  New York Post, Ed Klein has written that Valerie Jarrett orchestrated the leak surrounding Hillary Clinton's e-mails. 

Now it's true that Klein has been questioned on the veracity of his information on Hillary Clinton in the past even by conservatives

But if the allegations are even partially true it could result in a full fledged civil war within the Democratic Party. 

If this civil war comes to pass then Valerie Jarrett would have fired the first shot.


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Al Rosen, R.I.P.

By on 3.14.15 | 9:49PM

Former big league slugger Al Rosen passed away yesterday. He was 91.

Rosen spent his entire 10-year career with the Cleveland Indians. That career would be delayed by his participation in WWII. Rosen would serve in the Pacific where he would command a Landing Craft Mobile which supplied arms to Okinawa.

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Yu Darvish to Miss 2015 Season; Will Undergo Tommy John Surgery

By on 3.14.15 | 1:52PM

Texas Rangers ace Yu Darvish will miss the 2015 season due to a tear in his elbow ligament. He will undergo Tommy John surgery on Tuesday.

Darvish joined the Rangers in 2012 after winning 93 games in seven seasons with the Nippon Ham Fighters.

In three seasons with Texas, Darvish has gone 39-25 with a 3.27 ERA. Darvish has fanned 680 batters in only 545 1/3 innings pitched. He has been named to three AL All-Star teams and finished runner up in AL Cy Young balloting in 2013 to then Detroit Tigers pitcher Max Scherzer.

While it is a big blow to the Rangers, it should be remembered that Texas finished in last place in the AL West in 2014 with him. The Rangers will likely finish last in the AL West in 2015 without him.

Still, Darvish is one of baseball's most exciting pitchers and hopefully he will return to form in 2016.

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A Zippy Prime Minister?

By on 3.14.15 | 11:14AM

Many Americans conservative are sorry to read that Bibi and associates are in trouble with voters at home. Should he run for Prez here he would receive considerable support from this crowd.

How appealing is the alternative? Apart from any substantive issues, there is this potential aesthetic problem. Tzipi (pronounced Zippy) is a cool name for a Jack Russell Terrier. For a prime minister, not so much. If she does something Obama doesn’t like, which almost any Israeli prime minister is bound to, will he say to her, “Down, Tzipi. Sit. Stay.”

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Obama Should Be Embarrassed By His Letters to Iran

By on 3.13.15 | 12:49PM

In an interview with Vice, President Obama proclaims he is embarrassed at the 47 GOP Senators who signed Arkansas Senator Tom Cotton's letter to Iran:

“I’m embarrassed for them. For them to address a letter to the ayatollah who they claim is our mortal enemy, and their basic argument to them is ‘don’t deal with our president ‘cause you can’t trust him to follow through on agreement.”

If anyone should be embarrassed it ought to be President Obama who has penned several letters to the Ayatollah Khamenei including one last November begging Iran to help the U.S. fight ISIS as well as to resume negotiations on a nuclear deal.

Apparently, in President Obama's mind, Congress is but his rubber stamp and not permitted to ratify treaties much less write letters to heads of state.

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Why Conservatives Should Be Skeptical Of The Ferguson Report

By on 3.13.15 | 12:20PM

Over at NRO, Jason Lee Steorts takes his fellow conservatives to task for not accepting the DOJ's report on the Ferguson Police Department at face value:

It is remarkable that many on the right have instead dismissed the report without even reading it — as if psychologizing Eric Holder or cross-referencing generic arguments about disparate impact and crime rates obviated the need to reckon with the Justice Department’s specific findings

It seems to me that a kind of team-sport mentality has prevailed. Conservatives do not like sweeping denunciations of the entire criminal justice system as racist, and they especially do not like violent protests, looting, and attacks on policemen — all very rightly. But from there, too many conservatives have come to see any criticism of police conduct, or any allegation of racism, as if it were a play by the opposing team. They duly boo. Instead, they should reflect that all that is correct in their defense of the police is compromised by the extension of that defense to anything unworthy of it.

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